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Classes and Credits Summary

Earn 12-15 credits while living in Washington!

Prep Class (2 credits, Pass/Fail, Political Science):  The Prep Class is conducted four evenings during the semester before students go to D.C.  Presentation of the research topic via Prezi, or similar program, after the term in D.C. (or a 3-5 minute video) is required to receive credit.  

Research Seminar (4 credits, graded).  This is the core course of the program where students conduct independent research on a topic of their choice and produce a substantial research paper of 20-30 pages.  The course is Friday morning from 10AM - 12 Noon.  Credit for majors other than Political Science can be assigned with oversight from faculty in other departments.  This course also fills upper level writing requirements.  

Internship (2 credits, Pass/Fail):  Internship hours are Monday - Thursday, 9AM - 5PM. Credit for majors other than Political Science can be assigned with oversight from faculty in other departments.  

Speakers Course (1 credit, Pass/Fail, Political Science):  Dinner is provided at this Monday evening course.  High profile speakers are brought in each week to discuss their organizations with students.  Attendance is required.  

Electives (3 credits each, graded):  Offered by faculty from Michigan, California, Pennsylvania and Washington University.  Specific electives may vary each term, the popular Theater and Politics course is (eligible for theater or English credits) is only offered during the fall semester.  Students may take 1 or 2 electives which are offered evenings or Friday afternoons.  Credit for electives offered by other schools appears on Uof M student transcripts.  

Prep Class

  Primary focus: internship search; resume/cover letter creation; interview techniques and tips; alumni mentoring. (2 credits).

Research Seminar

  Write and present a formal paper on a topic of interst (4 credits).

Speaker Series

Hear a different professional every week (1 credit). 

One of the required courses in the program is the Monday night speaker series, where students from all schools gather in the large lecture hall to hear Washington professionals talk about their work and offer advice for students.  In addition to people in politics and government, past speakers have included authors, musicians, scientists and high profile individuals from a wide spectrum of professions.  

Winter 2012 Speakers

Fall 2011 Speakers


  Work at an internship in your area of interest (2 credits).


UM and other facutly on varied topics each term (3 credits each).

Elective courses are offered by faculty from all of the schools sharing the Washington Center and represent a wide variety of topics and academic areas of interest.  UM students may take electives offered by faculty from other schools.  Electives vary each term depending on the faculty in residence at the UCDC Center. Information regarding elective offerings is provided to students on arrival in DC and instructions for registration are provided in the Prep Class.